Procurement: DRDO Does It Again


January6, 2007: India's Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) has dropped the ball on another major project. This time it's the AWACS aircraft all three services are looking forward to getting. DRDO was given $500 million three years ago for this project. India could have just bought an AWACS, like Pakistan is doing (a SAAB 2000 aircraft equipped with a Swedish phased array radar.) But India wants to develop its own radar, and this apparently means that the DRDO developed AWACS now won't be ready until 2016. Meanwhile, India will have three Russian Il-76 aircraft, mounting an Israeli Phalcon phased array radars, to do the job until the "made-in-India" system available. Three years ago, the plan was to have the Indian aircraft ready by 2012. DRDO has a long tradition of screwing things up like this, and it appears that the tradition continues.


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